Award Board

Astha Thapa Pandey: Chair

Astha Thapa has a B.A. in Government and Anthropology from Harvard University. She was awarded the prestigious Stride Rite Post-Graduate Fellowship Award for Public Service in her senior year of college and subsequently returned home to Nepal. Since then, she has been working in education and women’s rights. She has worked in innovative education programmes such as Open Learning Exchange Nepal and Rato Bangala School/Foundation. She was also the first Executive Director of Tewa (Nepal’s women’s fund), a programme officer in Women’s Fund Asia (a regional women’s fund) and a founding member and the first Board Chair of Voices of Women (VOW) Nepal. In addition to Saksham Yuwa Nepal (the National Award Operator for the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award in Nepal) board, she also serves on the executive boards of Rato Bangala Foundation and Harvard Group of Nepal. While at Rato Bangala, she was the first Award leader for the DoE International Award there and organised their first Award Leader Training in 2011. She also attended the Training of Trainers meeting in Sri Lanka later that year. She joined the board of Saksham Yuwa Nepal in 2016. After the earthquake in Nepal in 2015, Astha co-founded Resilient Homes with a group of peers and was on the fundraising and implementation steering committee, which built homes for nearly 700 families all over Nepal. During this time, she also worked as a consultant for the American Jewish World Service (AJWS) on disaster response, funding organisations working with minorities and vulnerable and underrepresented communities to help them recover and rebuild after the earthquake.

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Chandrayan Shrestha: Immediate past chair

He is the Principal and Owner of Caribbean School. He was the first Award Leader in Nepal in 1999 at Shuvatara School where he was Vice Principal and he is also a T4T trained Award Leader trainer. He is now working on developing the Award in eastern Nepal. He is keen on the Award as he has a love of outdoors and is confident in the results of the Award in empowering and developing the youth.

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Sneha RajmiLaxmi Rana: Vice Chair

She is a medical doctor interning in Nepal Medical College Teaching Hospital Kathmandu. She is also a 10m air rifle shooter; represented Nepal in international events including the 2012 London Olympics, 2010 Asian Games China and 2014 Asian Games Korea. She is the Patron of the physical Recreation section for The Award and sits on the Executive Board as a youth representative.

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Dawa Steven Sherpa: Executive Board Member

He is a well know personality in the tourism industry of Nepal, he runs a tourism company and climbing wall facility. He has climbed Everest among other mountains and completed the entire Great Himalayan Trail and loves all sport. He also has a keen interest in sustainable development and is on the Board of Directors of Himalayan Climate Initiative. He is very optimistic about the Award and the positive impact the Award has on the youth. He is very motivated to support the Award in Nepal. Dawa is the Patron of the Adventurous Journey Section and has always provided the Award with expert insight on how to provide the participants the best adventurous journey experience.

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Devraj Ghimire: Board Secretory

He is the former chairman of Asia Pacific Regional Programme Sub-Committee/World Organization of Scout movement, Executive Committee Member QUEST –Nepal and the President of Rotary Club Mahabouddha RI District 3292. He is a very active member of the Board and is helping in coordinating the Scout and Award partnership to promote the Award to a wider youth audience.

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